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Gov. Kelly announces appointments to Early Childhood Transition Task Force

Gov. Laura Kelly earlier this week announced her appointments to the Early Childhood Transition Task Force, including Amanda Petersen, director of the Kansas State Department of Education’s Early Childhood team.  

The task force is charged with reviewing Kansas’ early childhood care and education system and developing a roadmap for the creation of a cabinet-level agency dedicated to supporting Kansas children. 

“I’m proud to announce the appointment of this bipartisan group of Kansans to serve on the Early Childhood Transition Task Force,” Kelly said. “Representing business, government, advocacy and the early childhood sectors, these appointees bring years of experience and a wealth of expertise to the most important challenge we face as a state – giving our next generation the strongest possible start to life. I look forward to collaborating with this group and reviewing their findings in the coming months.” 

Other members appointed to the Early Childhood Transition Task Force are: 

  • Barry Downing, Wichita - Honorary chair 
  • Cornelia Stevens, Wichita - Co-chair 
  • Sam Huenergardt, Shawnee - Co-chair 
  • Secretary Laura Howard, Topeka 
  • Secretary Janet Stanek, Topeka 
  • Melissa Rooker, Fairway 
  • Sara Bloom, Hays 
  • Lona Duvall, Garden City 
  • Kelly Davydov, Overland Park 
  • Betsy Wearing, Salina 
  • Jennifer Adhima, Lawrence 
  • David Jordan, Hutchinson 
  • Monica Murnan, Pittsburg 
  • Sen. Pat Pettey, Kansas City 
  • Sen. Brenda Dietrich, Topeka 
  • Rep. Susan Ruiz, Shawnee 
  • Rep. Troy Waymaster, Bunker Hill 

Gov. Kelly also announced that The Hunt Institute will provide operational and staffing support to the task force. Established in 2001 by former North Carolina Gov. James Hunt, The Hunt Institute’s mission is to provide unbiased research, technical expertise and learning opportunities that equip and empower educators and policymakers to drive equitable education reforms. 

The Hunt Institute will serve as the task force’s primary convener, providing policy and research expertise and managing a statewide community engagement tour. 

The task force will have its first meeting in the coming weeks. 

Posted: Feb 23, 2023,
Comments: 0,
Author: Ann Bush

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